Let’s Work Together to Create a Better 2021
The recent insurrection attempt at the US Capital shows that the complexities that arose in 2020 are not yet in the rear-view mirror. Many have asked about reports of continued protests and rallies that may turn violent. The below letter from MNPD Chief Drake was received by Metro Council Members.
There is an understandable amount of anxiety and frustration about the rollout of the vaccine. As with all things related to COVID-19, this website is your best local source to follow Metro Health Department processes and find when your eligible timeframe for receiving the vaccine is here and how to sign up. That’s also the place to continue to get the latest information on testing centers. Further helpful information at the State Department of Health here is a good resource as well.
As you may have seen, I’ve been on the news a bit to talk about the uptick in crime, mostly stemming from our hotel / motel and hospitality businesses in the district. As mentioned to the media, some of this is not new to an uptick we see around the holidays, but certainly some is attributed to the ancillary issues from the pandemic. I have worked hard at establishing a stronger communication network between our Hermitage Precinct and hospitality businesses and has already shown to have some efficacy. It will be a monthly meeting focused specifically on how our hospitality businesses can unite together, apply best practices of managing their parking lots guided by the Hermitage Precinct, share resources for being more proactive in protecting their properties, and utilizing improved technology to create a faster, more effective communication network to all area hospitality businesses and MNPD when an incident happens.
As you have likely noticed, we have an uptick in homelessness issues in the district and new camps have been set up in various locations. Homelessness is one of the most complex issues to deal with and must be done with sensitivity and support for our unhoused neighbors.To that end, I am hosting a virtual community meeting on this topic on Thursday, January 28th at 7pm. I strongly encourage everyone to attend. Thanks to Donelson neighbor Tara Shaver, she will host the meeting on her corporate Zoom account and manage the logistics. We will hear from our Metro Homeless Impact Division and learn about their role and efforts, non-profit partners engaged in this effort, including Open Table Nashville, Room at the Inn, Mental Health Cooperative and People Loving Nashville. Sergeant Jeff White with our Hermitage Precinct will be in attendance to discuss MNPD’s role and efforts as they interact with the homeless community and how they interact with other Metro Departments. He will also discuss panhandling, which is a separate issue, but is somewhat connected to community concerns. State Representative Darren Jernigan will be in attendance to discuss this from a State perspective. This meeting will require registration. Please visit this link to register.
I continue to work hard on all things related to any further development in the Pennington Bend area, specifically on infrastructure. Last term I focus efforts on attempting to push for a third interchange. That does not appear likely to happen at all for several reasons, so am now focused on ensuring private development proposals to include ample infrastructure support and have created a couple new Capital Improvement Budget requests of Metro for future planning. Stay tuned for a community meeting within the next two months that’ll hold to bring everyone up to speed with my efforts.
Despite the challenges before us both at a national and local level, I have strong faith in our ability to come together and meet these challenges and create a brighter future for the next generation. I hope you will join me in working to find common ground, vehemently reject extremism as a cancer upon our democracy, create and participate in constructive dialogue (especially on social media), and be part of solutions to our problems in service to each other.